During the Monday Night Wars, part of the fun of watching both WCW Monday Nitro and WWE Monday Night Raw was seeing which superstar would jump ship between promotions next. It became common place to see Lex Luger go from WWE to WCW, 1-2-3 Kid become Syxx and then X–Pac and of course Diesel and Razor form the Outsiders and create the nWo. It made the Monday Night War that a lot more fun for fans, as we constantly got to see another dream match whenever another guy would jump.
Before and during the war, there was also plenty of ship jumping going on. While historians only focus on some of the bigger names, it’s interesting to see some of the biggest names in their humblest beginnings. We know Nash was Oz and Hall was the Diamond Studd, but have you ever heard of guys like the Natural, Robbie V, or Damon Striker? Sure you have–you just don’t know that you have yet. That’s where we come in.
Forget the people that you know who got started in WCW like Terra Ryzing, Lord Steven Regal, and Cactus Jack. This list is all about the “oh yeah” moments we get a kick out of when seeing some of our favorite actors in a forgotten role. The same holds true with some of our favorite wrestlers. It’s “Before They Were Stars,” the WCW editions, brought to you in the form of the Top 15 WWE Wrestlers You Didn’t Realize Started in WCW.
15 Rowdy Roddy Piper
14 Rhyno (Terry Richards)
13 Rob Van Dam (Robbie V)
12 Rikishi (Fatu)
11 I.R.S. (Mike Rotunda)
10 Goldust (The Natural Dustin Rhodes)
9 Jamie Noble (Jamie-San, Jamie Knoble)
8 Road Dogg (Brian Armstrong)
7 A.J. Styles
6 John Laurinaitis (Johnny Ace)
5 Molly Holly (Miss Madness)
4 Raven (Scotty Flamingo)
3 Doink (Matt Borne / Big Josh)
2 Smash (Krusher Khruschev)
1 Edge (Damon Striker)
Being Canadian has its perks when you wrestle in Ontario and the future head of WWE Canada, Carl De Marco, is watching you. That’s more or less the beginning of Edge’s historic and game changing Hall of Fame run in WWE. Had he not have been noticed by De Marco, we might be (barely) remembering him as WCW’s Damon Striker, a gamey jobber, being trounced by members of the Dungeon of Doom, which was the extent of his brief WCW run.
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